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tv   Sens. Manchin and Collins on Feb. 8 Funding Deal  CSPAN  January 23, 2018 5:43am-5:58am EST

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anything, i think if we've learned anything during this process, it set a strategy to shut down the government over the issue of illegal immigration is something the american people didn't understand and would not have understood in the future. so i'm glad we've gotten past that and we have a chance now to get back to work. and, therefore, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that the ma shutdown, this senator collins and mansion were part of the group that worked several times to work out a resolution. discussed what the next three weeks could look like and the chance of a long-term budget solution. this is 15 minutes.
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the country is open for business again. and my dear friend susan collins we are the two most bipartisan voting members. we have basically taken over susan's offices, that is where we meet in a bipartisan way. everybody is talking with each
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other, trying to help each other. i want to thank susan for always being here. we start this in 2013 when the first shutdown happened. we were so frustrated. we said, can't we just get some like-minded people together? that is when we started pushing our leadership into a bipartisan deal. it was a natural for our common sense coalition to do it again. susan jumps to the front. when did that come want to introduce you to my dear compatriot, susan collins. susan: today is a day to celebrate, because we have shown that a determined group of senators working together across the aisle can result in positive action. in this case, the reopening of government. government shutdown represents the ultimate failure to govern.
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it causes real hardship, not only for our military, for those brave men and women who are wearing the uniform of our country, but for all those who depend on government programs, and those who work at administering these programs. last time we had a government shutdown in 2013, at cost our economy 1.5 million dollars per day. even more profound is the harm that it does to public confidence in government, and our ability to be leaders of this country. joe and i worked very hard in leading the efforts of the common sense coalition in 2013 to reopen government. we talked about reconvening our group, which we did last week after government shutdown.
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our first meeting was on friday. we started out with about 17 senators attending the first meeting in our office. the number grew ultimately to 25 senators. senators representing generally the center of the parties, but both the democrats and republicans. what we shared in common was the determination to accomplish the goal of reopening government, convincing our leaders that there was a path forward that would also accommodate those of us who were concerned about the fate of the dreamers who live in this country, many of whom have known no other country as their home. there are many other issues that we need to do with, including
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the urgent need for additional defense spending and for the opioid crisis. that is the crisis that affects both of our states. today we have taken a significant step forward with more than 80 senators voting to reopen government and with a commitment from the republican leader to bring an immigration bill to the floor with ample opportunity for those with differing views to offer up a substitutes to a bill. >> one thing that unites us here is our military, our veterans, those who have served and those who continue to defend our country. that is extremely important to all of us, whether you are democrat or republican. how do we protect them and give them everything that they need to keep a safe?
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the children's health insurance program, the pension program. these are all so seriously important for all of us. i think that we will take the lead today. we will answer a few questions. >> let me make one comment on the chip program. i am particularly happy that the children's health insurance program, which i remember sponsoring as a freshman senator, and it is a 6 year reauthorization. it was absolutely urgent that it be extended in order not to disrupt or jeopardize health
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insurance for 9 million low income children, including nearly 23,000 in the state of maine. >> and about the same in west virginia. >> i am very happy that in addition to opening government, we have assured that the program will continue. >> can you walk us through what happened? last night there was optimism and then pessimism over night. can you talk about what specifically changed? >> let me just say that every meeting that we were in, was always an optimistic meeting. with always knew that there was a pathway forward and it was a reasonable pathway forward. there was other people that felt differently. the bottom line was that it should never be shut down. we knew that.
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we were all moving in a very positive way towards that, but leadership was still in that jousting, back-and-forth. the rules of the senate have to change. i'm speaking for myself, not for my bipartisan group. i do not believe that either leader on either side should have the powers that they have. that is me speaking. no 2 people should be in a position of that much power when you have a force as strong as ours moving in a direction. they listened. that is what moved it. we were not backing off. we were not going to be be into submission -- be beat into submission. how come the appropriations bills aren't working?
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>> let me just add a little bit to what joe has said. first of all, every single difficult negotiation that i have ever been in, in the 21 years that i have served in the senate has had peaks and valleys. this is no different. i give our leaders a lot of credit for listening to the ideas that we put forward and for showing some flexibility. after starting out being pretty dug in and obviously, ultimately, it was the decisions made by mitch mcconnell and chuck schumer that brought us to this point. i believe that our group, by giving them specific ideas for how to move forward, and because of the size and bipartisan
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nature of our group, played a very instrumental role. >> you get a lot of people from the outside start pushing. chuck and mitch had to come together for the good of the country and say, you're going to get your voices heard. we got to open this government up and move forward. >> the proposal that mitch mcconnell put forward, is it the same one that you brought to him? or is it some iteration of that? >> it is a variation on the theme, but it does reflect the approach that we suggested, which is that government would be reopened, we would all continue to work on the global issues that are still out there, such as budget cap. if those issues were not resolved by a certain date, he
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would bring to the senate floor a vehicle for the immigration issues to be resolved, including border security and the dreamer population. i think we helped shape it. ultimately, it reflected the negotiations of the 2 leaders. >> the common sense coalition, our purpose was not to write a piece of legislation. it was basically, these people should be heard, and this process should work. we were all working under time constraints. you've got to dates that you're working on right now. how can we make this happen? both leaders are working on
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this, on what they can agree to put on the floor. it is directed in one direction for the purpose of that daca process. >> [indiscernible] >> that depends on the outcome of the global negotiations that are going on. i believe, as laid out by leader mcconnell, if there is not a global agreement on issues ranging from defense spending, domestic spending, budget caps, the health care issues that are still out there, the immigration issue, then the immigration bill would be brought as a separate piece of legislation if there is no agreement. or there would be a vehicle for
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that and that would occur february 8. >> it is a 60 vote threshold. democrats have the opportunity to make sure that there is a process. that is what they are going to use, in a reasonable way. himuse, in a reasonable way. some people might be unreasonable in certain aspects. mitch i think was very gracious in saying what he said today. his speech this morning made all of the difference in the world. it opened up the vehicle that we needed to carry forth. the pressure is going to be on basically when we get our job done, then paul ryan has to get -- do his job. we cannot dictate as to what the president and the executive branch is going to do. we can only do the senate'a wor
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-- senate's work. >> do you plan to bring in the house? what is the guarantee that this will not happen again in three weeks? >> there are no guarantees around here. >> now, reaction from the white house following video that was struck in the senate to reopen the government. sarah sanders was asked about the president's role in negotiations and his position on immigration moving forward. this is 20 minutes.

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